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The IAGenWeb Project

History of Benton County, Iowa
The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, 1910; Luther B. Hill, Ed.

Pages 647-648

HENRY J. DAVIS, one of the successful farmers and substantial citizens of Fremont township, Benton county, Iowa, dates his birth in Linn county, this state, May 30, 1862. His parents, Henry and Louisa (Baker) Davis, were born in Baden, Germany, and Prussia, respectively; the father, born December 1, 1837, died in August, 1891; the mother, born February 17, 1838, is now a resident of Norway, Iowa. Their family consisted of six children, of whom Henry J. is the eldest, the others in order of birth being as follows: Mary, wife of John Weiehman, of Fremont township; Lena, wife of Lewis Deklotz, of Newhall, Iowa; Bertha, wife of William Means, of Vinton, Iowa; Louisa, wife of John T. Smith, of Norway, Iowa; and Elizabeth, wife of Ferman Lucas, of California.

It was in 1853 that Henry Davis, a young man without a dollar, landed in this country. His first stop was in DeKalb county, Illinois, where he spent about one year, and from whence he came to Iowa and took up his abode in Linn county. He married while in Linn county. In 1863 he came to Benton county and rented land, which he cultivated for several years, subsequently buying a farm in section 19 of Fremont township, and there passing the rest of his life. At the time of his death he was the owner of six hundred acres in Fremont township. He died in 1902. He had acceptably filled several local offices, including those of county supervisor, justice of the peace and township clerk, and he was held in high esteem by all who knew him.

Henry J. Davis, being the only son in the family, was his father's dependence on the farm. He remained at home until, after his father's death. Then he settled on his present farm, one hundred and sixty acres of fine land well improved in section 30, Fremont township.

On June 26, 1906, Mr. Davis married Mrs. Lena (Ockenfels) Wianans, widow of Edward J. Wianans. She was born in Germany, October 28, 1883, and in 1893 came to this country with her mother, Mrs. Margaret Ockenfels, now a resident of Norway, Iowa. By her first husband Mrs. Davis had one child, David Edward, and by Mr. Davis she had two, John H. and Ferdinand C. Politically Mr. Davis is a Republican, and fraternally he is identified with the Order of Foresters at Norway.    He and his family are Catholics.

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